RACER's Marshall Pruett speaks with PMNA CEO Jens Walther (LEFT) about the manufacturer's decision to sign a new team to represent the brand in the USCC, possible drivers for the car and whether customer versions of the 991 RSR will be made available in the USA.
MARSHALL PRUETT: The decision to sign a new works deal with the CORE autosport team caught more than a few people by surprise last weekend. It had been rumored for months, but I think for those outside the paddock, there was an expectation for Porsche to resume its factory relationship with Flying Lizard Motorsports (BELOW). Why didn't that happen?
JENS WALTHER: That's a difficult question because I was only partly involved in the decision. I think that the decision was based on a number of criteria and one certainly being having a fresh start. It's a good fit people believe because there's a strong engineering focus on CORE with their manufacturing business adjacent to the race team. So I think that's basically some of the element I can see.
I think the relationship with Flying Lizard, it's still a very current one with Porsche, a very strong relationship still in GTC, and I think they've shown GTC how professional they can run a race team. They are one of the leading teams in GTC. And moving forward, we hope we can continue the relationship with Flying Lizard, which is more than 10 years now, going into GT Daytona.
MP: CORE has set a rather high standard so far – both in presentation and their on-track performances. It's a very crisp and clean operation. Did that enter into the decision-making process?
JW: Yeah, we share the view you just mentioned. The team is very young, very dynamic. Yet very professional with a strong leadership. I think the decision why Porsche has chosen CORE versus other teams, again, it's something where I can only say it's probably because of the leadership and engineering. And shared values as well. The high level of professionalism and also the way they worked with GT3 RSR this year in the ALMS. Jumping into the season and the way the approached the team, the program was very professional. Very dedicated, very focused. It had an impact on the decision.